China trains rural blind people for massage business

18:17, October 15, 2009      

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China has launched a one-year free program of massage training for visually-impaired people in impoverished rural areas, said the China Association of the Blind (CAB) Thursday.

The project plans to train a total of 300 blind people in ten provinces and autonomous regions including Shanxi, Sichuan, Guizhou, Qinghai, Gansu, Jiangsu, Liaoning, Jiangxi, Ningxia and Inner Mongolia.

Every training term lasts three months.

"Massage is a professional skill which is suitable for blind people and has large market demand... With the help of the program, these poor blind people can earn a better living on their own and make contribution to the society at the same time," said CAB President Li Zhijun.

According to the association, trainees will take an examination after the course and those who pass the test will get an elementary level certificate for health care massage which is recognized in the business nationwide.

The project was jointly launched by the Chinese Red Cross Foundation, the CAB and the China Disabled Persons' Federation Employment Service and Administration Center, with a fund worth 900,000 yuan (131,600 U.S. dollars) from the foundation.

The foundation also plans to build a vocational school for blind people in five years.

Statistics from the CAB show that currently the country has a total of 16.91 million blind people, most of whom live in rural areas.

Source:Xinhua
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